In my opinion, diet plans are too restrictive. However, if you are on a diet plan, you like and it’s working for you, I say stick with it until you reach your weight loss goals.
Still, do you sometimes find yourself cheating on your diet plan? If so, that’s OK.
Trust me, it is.
In fact, allowing yourself to have a diet cheat day every once in awhile may actually help you succeed in your weight loss efforts and finally get thin. Here’s why:
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Restrictions on Diet Plans Are Unrealistic
Diet plans have all kinds of restrictions dictating to dieters what they can and can’t eat. As such, dieters are compelled to give up the foods they love, particularly the “unhealthy food,” and try to eat healthy until they lose the weight they want.
First of all, contrary to what fitness gurus will preach, there is nothing wrong with occasionally eating unhealthy food. It’s the over consumption of unhealthy food that’s a problem and what makes people overweight.
While diet plans attempt to get dieters to eat healthy, which by the way are good intentions, in all honestly, diet plans don’t teach people how to eat healthy as part of a lifestyle change.
Take for example popular diet plans like the 7 Day Diet, 3 Day Diet, The Carb Lovers Diet, or The New Beverly Hills Diet. Do these diets really aim to educate dieters on how to eat healthy for life? Besides, even if dieters were to choose a diet plan that’s “clean”, you know… free of all the unhealthy food, are you really going to avoid eating a slice of cake or a burger with fries for the rest of your life?
Unrealistic if you ask me. Hence, my belief why dieters should have a diet cheat if they are trying to slim down.
If you can count calories, having a diet cheat day is really not a big deal because the unhealthy foods can be easily calculated and recorded like your other meals for the day. However, having a diet cheat day is not an excuse to binge in excess and then claim “Oh it’s my cheat day.”
As always, unhealthy food, especially foods high in sugar, calories, and fat, should be eaten in moderation if fat loss is the goal.
A Diet Cheat Day Can Teach Self Discipline
Another reason why to have a diet cheat day is because it can teach dieters how to have self-discipline when it comes to eating unhealthy food. For instance, portion control, meal planning, moderation, and weight control are all part of self-discipline that’s crucial to losing weight for lasting results and weight maintenance.
Once more, diets don’t teach dieters how to eat healthy. All diet plans do is merely instruct dieters on what foods to avoid within a short period of time (i.e. the 30 Day Diet, the 7 Day Diet, the 3 Day Diet, etc.) Then when dieters go to holiday parties, family gatherings, or hang out with friends, they don’t know how to practice self-discipline when the foods they should be avoiding, like the unhealthy foods, are in front of them due to easy accessibility.
As a result, dieters “binge eat” on their diet plan during such outings and naturally, they don’t get the results they want because they believed they could “lose 10 pounds in a week” or “lose 20 pounds in a month” based off of some fad diet.
No wonder why so many dieters fail to lose weight.
On the other hand, if dieters can learn self-discipline by allowing themselves to have a diet cheat day by simply counting calories, a cheat day doesn’t have to sabotage one’s diet.
Again, portion control, meal planning, moderation, and weight control are all part of self-discipline that’s crucial to losing weight for lasting results and weight maintenance.
Diet Plans Play Mind Games
The last reason why dieters should have a diet cheat day is because let’s face it; we’re all only human.
Notice how all the foods you can’t have you want the most? However, stray off your diet plan for even a minute and “SHAME ON YOU!” This is the psychological mind games the weight loss industry plays on dieters who are desperate to get thin.
To drive home my point one more time, diet plans don’t teach people how to eat healthy as part of a healthy lifestyle change. Diet plans merely tell dieters what foods they should avoid.
Then again, the blame can’t entirely be placed on the weight loss industry.
Well for starters, it’s a dieter’s fault for treating weight loss as a “temporary situation” when in reality, losing weight is about making permanent lifestyle changes; NOT about dieting.
While there are dieters who honestly do have some success with diet plans, many of them gain all the weight back, plus more, simply because they returned to their old eating habits that got them in trouble in the first place. Before you know it, those dieters will want to start yet, another diet plan.
Don’t let this happen to you.
If you want weight loss results that’s lasting, I say forget about “dieting” altogether. However, as I mentioned earlier, if you are on a diet plan that you like and it’s working for you, then stick with until you reach your weight loss goals. And…if you do happen to find yourself cheating on your diet, it’s not a big deal.
A diet cheat day can actually help you to lose weight anyway.
As long as you can portion control, plan out your meals, eat high calorie food in moderation, and practice weight control, you can get the self-disciple you need to warrant having a diet cheat day where worrying about sabotaging your diet will become a thing of the past.
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